Does a setback mean I’ve failed?

This week was all about setbacks and distraction.

The discomfort with my tailbone has been constant. I had treatment for it on Tuesday and have been nursing it ever since. Yes, I’ve wimped out this week and gone for a couple of walks and sort of did a workout. It’s all good. I will exercise again.

Distractions have been the parallel theme. Searching online for job postings then writing cover letters and preparing resumes pushes me to the limit every day. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this is not my favourite thing to do. It’s a huge struggle to write about myself and what I’m capable of or have done.

Hey Cynthia, how’s your stress level doing?

UGH! I am whiny and flustered and just want to go take a nap.

Seeing that the job search increases my stress level, I’ve made a decision. I hired a resume writing service. I’m feeling hopeful about this choice and spent most of Saturday reading and making notes that I sent to the writer. Fingers crossed.

It’s funny how the five building blocks are connected. When one is wobbling the others are impacted. A stressy week takes my mindset and eating habits along for the ride. Today things are looking up. My tailbone is feeling somewhat better, I spent the afternoon in the kitchen cooking. Even snuck downstairs to do my arm exercises while my bolognese was simmering. ūüôā

Setbacks and distractions are normal and will happen again. I guess it depends on how you look at them. I view them both as temporary. ūüėČ Now to go do some squats.

This week I’m going to aim for 3-4 workouts and lots of stretching. We’ll see what happens. Maybe I’ll cook more this week too.

Ciao!

 

~ my job search saga…

As I think about what to do next with my life, I think about wanting to start an online business being able to work from anywhere until the fear of the unknown grabs me and I go online to search for the false sense of security in a traditional job. I have to admit the job search process is more stressful than dealing with my illness was! That may seem strange but think about it. With illness I was able to make decisions and had a say in what happened. A job search takes a whole different path. 

The path begins with searching for a posting that appeals to me and fits my skill set. Then it turns to reviewing the posting and highlighting the keywords that seem important to the role and ensuring my resume and cover letter include those special words in hopes that my writing skills get noticed. Then I submit my specially crafted cover letter and resume into cyber space and hand off my fate to the hands of an algorithm behind something known as an Applicant Tracking System, ATS, yes another bloody acronym!!!

Now the¬†waiting part. How long do I wait? What am I waiting for? A phone call, an email? Your guess is as good as mine. This part seems¬†odd since most postings have comments along these lines, ‘no phone calls please’ or ‘only short¬†listed candidates will be contacted’. Great! If you are fortunate enough to be contacted for an interview, you are doing well. So be prepared to answer questions¬†intelligently and not be a total dork, like I recently was on a telephone interview. Oh well, live and learn. The alternative is¬†silence in all forms or perhaps an impersonal email addressed to ‘dear sir or madam’ telling you that you¬†didn’t make the short list. It’s an icy cold email yet at least it is communication. Hmmm…I think I have to step up my game!¬†

This new¬†world of online¬†networking, creatively writing cover letters and the quest to¬†write resumes using¬†adjectives which describe ones accomplishments not just list job duties, not to mention searching online for ways to beat the¬†applicant¬†tracking systems…now one has to be smarter than the software application! Ugh! ¬†All this while checking ones ego in this competitive job market. The¬†articles that come up¬†when I search anything job or career related are amusing, I enjoyed seeing this title – resume optimizing techniques! Buzzwords abound! All of this leaves me wondering, where has the human¬†element gone from Human Resources????¬†

While searching and finding new postings that interest me, I go back into my resume to review and amend it for the next application. My heart¬†sinks as I come¬†across a typo! NO!!!! I am crushed!!¬†After spending so much time on this¬†document I can’t¬†even read it clearly anymore. So much for the spelling and grammar check function!?!?! Damn! Back to my tracking spreadsheet to note my flawed resume¬†and kiss those opportunities goodbye. Back to my old school style of reviewing a document by¬†reading it aloud while tracing each word with my opposite hand! All is good now!¬†

Having a profile on LinkedIn I receive job¬†search threads where people post their concerns and comment on others questions. A repeat topic that turns up is titled ‘how to explain away a medical issue’…¬†What?? No one asks to have a health issue! Why on earth¬†is a person¬†supposed to cover up a fact in their life! Unbelievable!¬†Again I wonder,¬†where is the human element¬†hiding in Human Resources?¬†

I may be dating myself here, but I miss the days when you could walk into a business, talk to a person and¬†hand them¬†your resume. At the very least¬†make a¬†first impression instead of having an¬†algorithm assess the first impression of you¬†as nothing more than an ‘applicant’. Perhaps technology has not changed the hiring process for the better.¬†

I remain optimistic and am sure that things¬†will work out just fine. In the meantime I will try to keep my sanity amongst the acronyms and algorithms. ūüė≥

Still sparkling…one day at a time. ¬†¬†ūüėä